FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — Fort St. John’s first cannabis store located outside of the downtown core opened to the public on Tuesday, and owner Hayden Huxley believes the new business offers residents more than just a different location.
Huxley and his girlfriend own Portage Mountain Cannabis in Hudson’s Hope, and once Fort St. John changed its cannabis zoning bylaws, the couple decided to expand their small business to the Energetic City.
“We opened the Hudson’s Hope location last April and always had the goal to expand. We are local to the region, and we want to be up here, so it’s been a goal of ours to come to Fort St. John,” Huxley said.
When asked what sets his cannabis store apart from the multiple other cannabis retailers in Fort St. John, he said there are a couple of key differences, but the first is the shop’s location at #101-9536 111th Street.
“To be located away from the downtown core and on the highway gives accessibility to people. Especially if they’re pulling the horse trailer, going camping with their camper on already, or just don’t want to go to the downtown core,” Huxley said.
He added that the store regularly rotates stock so customers can purchase fresh products.
The manager of the new location, Dwayne Anderson, added that he believes customers will notice a local business feel to the store, which is decorated by photos of the Peace region.
“Small-town values, small-town vibe. We’ve got local people. We tend to stay away from that corporate culture. That’s not who we are,” Anderson said.
Portage also has books available that customers can borrow from the store so they can learn more about cannabis.